Matthew Jeanes

Micmacs and the Danger of Style

When Big Fish came out, it occurred to me that Tim Burton and Jean Pierre Jeunet were both mining the quirky cinematic space of magical realism, but that Jeunet was more adept at making style and story serve one another.  Jeunet was telling stories that required a cast of misfits, poets, romantics, and tinkerers and he … Continue reading

World Cup Scenario

The potential matchup between Germany and Holland in the World Cup Final this year (didn’t happen–SPOILER!) got me thinking about that amazing teaser trailer for the Dutch-produced Nazi-Zombie film, Worst Case Scenario.  Though the production team put together a brilliant couple of minutes that promised a highly stylized Nazi-Zombie invasion, the film never made it … Continue reading

The Bill of Rights (In Movies)

In honor of Independence Day, I put together a list of movies aligned with each of the first ten amendments to the Constitution.  Call it a Cinematic Bill of Rights.  I promise that Will Smith does not appear on this list.  First Amendment (freedom of press, speech, religion, assembly) All the President’s Men (1976)This is the big one–an … Continue reading

Japanese Movie Night Vol. 1

The contemporary film geek is inundated with news about Anime features and creepy J-Horror films being remade in the west, but Japanese cinema offers so much more than that.  My wife and I dedicate one night each week to movie-watching and we alternate who picks the title.  So far this year, she has introduced me … Continue reading

World Cup Movie Picks

I’ve been watching more soccer than movies for the last two weeks but I’ve still been putting together a movie list to accompany the World Cup.  A friend of mine runs the best video rental store in Atlanta and I maintain a Staff Picks section on their website where I try to offer recommendations.  The movies … Continue reading

Where Splice Went Wrong

Splice is the second movie this year (after Daybreakers) that left me buzzing about what could have been.  Plenty of films don’t even warrant that–they are so bad or so middling that they don’t even inspire a creative analysis of what worked and what could have worked. I’d rather see a dozen near misses than a surefire … Continue reading

The Death of the Cinema

It’s a disastrous time to be a movie lover.  The movies themselves are part of the problem, but for folks who like to spend a few hours at the cinema in a darkened auditorium, the public part of the movie-going experience is starting to pose too big of a barrier.  Never mind the ticket prices … Continue reading

Getting Married with Jack Burton

One weekend during the summer of 2008 when my wife and I were just getting to know each other, she was feeling a little down and she wanted me to bring over a movie to cheer her up.  The order was for nothing too serious, but nothing too sweet and silly either.  “Maybe something from … Continue reading

Understanding Kontroll

For a film billed as a thriller, Kontroll is mighty abstract. For some reason, I always had it in mind that Kontroll was about some supernatural killings happening in the Budapest subway system–so I’m glad to learn that it’s not. I’m also glad that after passing it by on the Videodrome shelves for several years, … Continue reading

Actionfest: Operation Endgame

Rob Cordry: Action Hero. Yeah, that doesn’t sound quite right to me either. To be fair, Cordry isn’t really the hero of Operation Endgame, but he does have a couple of stunt-filled sequences and a scene where he has to realistically threaten someone’s life with a sharp object.   Actionfest somehow got a hold of … Continue reading